Wolfenstein: The New Order review - A B movie romp where the Nazis won is ridiculous, fun
£59.99; PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, Xbox One, Xbox 360, PC
The videogame industry’s unwillingness to let a franchise fade into obscurity is a dual edged blade. To the cynical eye, a brand name is there to sell copies, but some franchises carry a legacy that deserves to be remembered.
The granddaddy of the modern first person shooter, Wolfenstein’s last outing was the decidedly mediocre 2009 reboot which leaves Wolfenstein: The New Order the task of reigniting interest in the venerable series.
Set in an alternate version of the 1960s where the Nazi war machine has gained victory over the allied forces by harnessing impossibly advanced technological and scientific power, the series’ stalwart hero B. J. Blazkowicz fights alongside a dwindling resistance faction in a final counter-offensive against the Third Reich.
With hackneyed mysticism, space travel and a penchant for sudden appearances of clanking robot dogs, on the surface, Wolfenstein: The New Order has all the B-movie trappings of a silly, carefree romp, however it suffers from a wildly inconsistent tone.
The chapters set between combat excursions are excruciatingly dull, as stereotype characters offer mundane fetch-quests and attempt to forge an incongruous emotional narrative. Thankfully, these sections – as well as the infrequent moments of grindhouse-horror gore and Blazkowicz’s irritatingly nihilistic, portentous voice over – fail to derail an otherwise entertaining and generous campaign.
When The New Order reaches its stride the non-intrusive cover system, unexpectedly enjoyable stealth mechanics and satisfying gunplay coalesce with smart level design that eschews the restrictive corridor shootouts and scripted set-pieces of its peers in favour of connected, open-plan battle zones in a variety of extraordinary environments.
While some may bemoan the lack of multiplayer, this is a bold, accomplished debut from Swedish developer MachineGames that proves you can still teach an old wolf new tricks.
Life & Style blogs
The Art of Swimming: The way many people swim might be doing them more harm than good, says a man bringing posture to the pool
The brothel buster: Meet the man who gets paid to have sex with prostitutes
New exhibition celebrates the evolution of swimwear
Woman, 21, dies after taking contraceptive pill that 'caused fatal blood clot'
What do the emoji on Snapchat mean?
As a white man, I'm surprised more women aren't tweeting the hashtag #KillAllWhiteMen
Scotland may have to leave the EU even if it votes to stay in, David Cameron confirms
The day that Britain resigned as a global power
SNP fury as HS2 finds 'no business case' for taking fast train service to Scotland
EU referendum: David Cameron's rules are a 'democratic disgrace', says French-born Scottish politician set to be denied a vote
A nation of inequality: How the UK is failing to feed its most vulnerable people
- 1 Cyclist who knocked down three-year-old girl says his life has been 'destroyed'
- 2 Chelsea victory parade: Chelsea mocked on Twitter as 'tens of fans' pack the streets of London
- 3 US warned by Chinese media to stop meddling or 'war will be inevitable'
- 4 Woman, 21, dies after taking contraceptive pill that 'caused fatal blood clot'
- 5 Isis burns woman alive for refusing to engage in 'extreme' sex act, UN says
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...
£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Graduate UI Application Developer - ...